On March 27th, AIFO and DPI Italia held the second seminar titled 'Empowerment of persons with disabilities and their organizations'. Like in the previous occasion, collaboration has been extended to Universities, pursuing the aim of training and sensitization of future development cooperation officials.
The training has been put in place together with the Interdepartmental Centre on Human Rights and the Rights of People, University of Padua, and gathered a high level panel of speakers, including representatives of local authorities of the Veneto Region, professors of Human Rights, NGOs and DPOs representatives, sharing best practices of 'empowerment' projects. Target groups have been students of the specialization course in 'human rights and disability', coordinated by DPI Italia.
The concept of empowerment has the meaning of strengthening capabilities of PwD to achieve what they whish, to give and to receive power, to pursue a social role. Empowerment is linked to citizenship, democracy, alliances, social inclusion which helps the process of application of rights, based on the full participation of PwD in all aspects of life.
Actions of empowerment mainly focus on strengthening the power of persons to choose, not only in the medical-rehabilitation filed but in an emancipation framework. To be put in place, empowerment must be accompanied by a mainstreaming action, a process through which it is envisaged to foresee the effects of a choice has on people or groups of people.
The discussion continued with the presentation of best practices examples.
Project EmpowerNet – focussing on empowering association leaders by increasing awareness, capabilities and competencies, promoting negotiation and design skills.
Peer counselling – a particular form of counselling designed to favour the individual empowerment process and, consequently, social emancipation. It is directed to PwD who work in the social services system and develops communication skills as the idea is that it is not important which topic is being discussed rather how it is done.
Project Mongolia, AIFO – a project started in 1992 directed to district medical doctors treating nomadic peoples of the region. It works through the Community Based Rehabilitation approach, with the aim to raise awareness of PwD and reach a level of self esteem in order to come out of isolation.
A Multi-Country Action-Learning Research initiative' AIFO/WHO – it works with empowerment in the field of sanitary services. The idea is to move away from a passive role of the patient to an approach where the he/she actively contributes in defining the condition and the subsequent treatment.
Project Morocco, OVCI – aims at reducing the abandonment of children with disabilities through the constitution of a parents association where parents, medical staff and children themselves develop activities for the social integration of children.
The list of speakers included: Fabrizio Ferrari, University of Padua; Gianna Benucci, International Cooperation - City of Padua; Francesca Succu, Regional Observatory on Handicap - Veneto Region; Diego Vecchiato, International Cooperation - Veneto Region; Enrico Pupulin, AIFO; Emilia Napolitano, President DPI Italia; Giampiero Griffo, DPI Italia; Paola Degani, Professor of Human Rights, Universtiy of Padua; Stefania Dondero, FISH; Rita Barbuto, DPI Italia; Francesca Ortali, AIFO; Sunil Deepak, AIFO; Stefania Lauri, OVCI
View the document 'Cooperazione allo sviluppo ed empowerment delle persone con disabilità - DPI' (PowerPoint - 11.5 Mo - Italian)
View the document 'Empowerment delle organizzazioni e delle persone con disabilità - F.I.S.H.' (PowerPoint - 195 Ko - Italian)
View the document 'Empowerment of organisations and people with disabilities - AIFO-DPI' (Word - 113 Ko - English)
View the document 'Mainstreaming della disabilità nella cooperazione allo sviluppo - AIFO-DPI' (PowerPoint - 151 Ko - Italian)
View the document 'Il progetto AIFO di riabilitazione su base comunitaria in Mongolia - AIFO' (PowerPoint - 12.8 Mo - Italian)
View the document 'Il peer counseling come strumento di empowerment' (PowerPoint - 805 Ko - Italian)
View the document 'Presentazione progetto UE Marocco ottobre 2005' (PowerPoint - 46.3 Mo - Italian)
View the document 'Pratiche migliori Multi-Country Action Research Initiative - AIFO-OMS' (PowerPoint - 616 Ko - Italian)